Many people tend to associate being single with being unhappy, and that’s why so many of us are often always in a rush to get in a relationship, a lightspeed race to finally find “the one”.
However, being single certainly offers a lot of benefits, from obvious ones to not-so-obvious ones you’ve probably never thought of. In this article we are answering the question: What are the advantages of being single?
Before we discuss these benefits, however, let us discuss the three key mindsets we should have about singledom vs being in a relationship:
The Right Mindset #1: Happiness is From Within, Not Without
Why do you want to be in a relationship or to get married in the first place?
Let’s face it, one of the most common answers is that “I want to be happier”, which is often a major root cause people tend to be clingy and desperate, entering a relationship with too high of an expectation.
Here is the deal: we shouldn’t make our (potential) spouse, or anyone at all, a source of our happiness.
It’s important to first understand that happiness comes from within and that happiness is a choice. Yes, external factors can matter—it’s harder to be happy when you are constantly bullied, for example—, but consider the fact that there are a lot of really rich people that are unhappy, while on the opposite side, there are also really poor people that are really happy and free.
This the reason why so many people in a relationship—or, married— are unhappy. Relationships and marriage only amplify your state of “single happiness”.
If you are happily single with a steady job and a lot of friends, you will be happy in a relationship (obviously we also have to consider whether you are with the right person), and vice versa. It’s very unlikely that an unhappy person will bring happiness to a relationship, in fact, it can also ruin the other party’s happiness.
So, don’t make your relationship a source of your happiness. Instead, be happy first, so that when you are finally in a relationship, you can share that happiness.
The Right Mindset #2: Being Single is Much Better Than Being in a Toxic Relationship
Let’s face it, unhealthy relationship sucks.
You’ve probably been in one (or two), or probably you’ve seen your closed ones experienced it in the past. There’s no negotiating it: being single is always better than being in a toxic relationship.
In fact, we might also argue that being single is still better than being in a mediocre relationship. It’s better to focus on yourself, focus on developing new skills, have meaningful work, and most importantly, be happy than being in a relationship that doesn’t really improve yourself as a person.
The Right Mindset #3: Alone is Not Always Lonely, and Vice Versa
Might be tied to the first one above, but remember that you can feel lonely when you are with others
—even with those we really love—, and on the other hand, you can always be alone and be productive, especially if you are born with an introverted personality.
Relationships don’t guarantee that you can finally get rid of that big hole we call loneliness. In fact, if you go in a relationship with such baggage, you can drag the other people into the same hole.
The Surprising Benefits of Being Single
Now that we are on the same page regarding the correct mindsets to have, here are 18 (yes, eighteen) surprising benefits of being single, starting with the first one:
1. You Can Flirt To Anyone
Remember that excitement of receiving a text from someone you just met at the bar last night? When you are single, you can always pursue that feeling without feeling guilty.
2. You Have All The Freedom To Improve Yourself
Studies have suggested that single people tend to experience more personal growth. When we are not in a relationship, we tend to have more desire to improve ourselves—it might be our natural instinct to attract more people, but hey, whatever works! —.
Obviously, you also have more time to read more books, attend new classes, go to college, and so on.
3. Hey, Dating and Hooking-Up Aren’t Cheap
A recent report by the New York Post suggested that the average American spend $168.17 a month on dating—and that’s probably a modest sum if you live in big cities—. On average, an American spends a whopping $121,082 a lifetime on dating.
Another recent survey by Bustle inferred that millennials are dating less because it’s now too expensive for them. So, it might be a valid reason to stay single and concentrate on your finances for now
4. Hey, a BreakUp/Divorce is Even More Expensive
A messy break-up—or worse, a divorce— can be extremely expensive for one or both parties. For instance, your partner might harm your credit score because they refuse to pay their share on rent or utility. For cases of divorce, there’s also the issue of alimony.
Note: this is not meant to discourage you to avoid relationships and/or get married. Being in a happy relationship certainly has its perks, and living together has massive economic benefits. Just so you know that it’s better and cheaper to be single than forcing yourself in an unhealthy relationship.
5. Free From The In-Laws
Obviously, not all of us are going to live with the in-laws, but I guess we can all agree that it’s very annoying when your mother in law criticize your job—or your cooking—.
Being single means you don’t have to worry about what to get the sister-in-law for her birthday this weekend, or when your brother-in-law’s kids monopolize your new TV or gaming laptop and he doesn’t do anything to stop them.
Best of all, you don’t have to worry whether it’s going to be another fight when you wanted to bring these up to your spouse.
6. You Can Travel or Move Anywhere You Want, Anytime
Ever been in a relationship and has a sudden desire to go backpacking to Bali? Or do you really want to move overseas but your spouse’s job is preventing this?
When we are in a relationship, we have to include them in planning our travels—both in the sense of schedule and finances—, and a lot of the times, this can lead to arguments and even fights
When you are single, however, you have the utmost freedom to travel anywhere, anytime—as long as you have the mean—.
7. You Don’t Have To Be Worried on Being Cheated On
It’s very common for those married or in a relationship to be paranoid about their partner cheating, and it’s certainly not a good feeling to have, especially when you’ve experienced it in the past (it’s awful, we know). When you are single, obviously you don’t have to fear this.
8. No Chores, Criticism, or Whines Waiting For You
Being single simply equals a lot less housework, and let’s face it, we all hate chores to some extent. This is especially true for married people, that can perform seven more hours on household chores, compared to when they are single.
When you are single, you don’t have to deal with those criticisms and whines when you forgot to take the garbage out or put down the toilet seat down. Freedom is good!
9. You Have The Freedom To Spend Your Money
Speaking about freedom, an underrated benefit of being single is that you don’t have to worry about how you spend your money. Want to snatch that new iPhone? Go for it! Want to purchase your dream car? You don’t have to worry about chipping in for your (unborn) child’s future college fund each month.
10. You Also Have More Freedom To Make Money
Similarly, you don’t have anyone to tell you how you should (legally) make your money. Want to take that job abroad? Go there tomorrow. Want to take that exciting managerial job at a new town? No one’s going to tell you don’t because someone’s someone’s ex-boyfriend worked there and that he’s going to be a “bad influence” for you.
11. Better Sleep—Both In Quantity and Quality—
A very underrated benefit here is that you can take up the whole bed for yourself. This will translate to sleeping better—and longer—. It’s very annoying to be woken up in the middle of the night by your spouse’s sudden movement, an elbow in the back, or their snoring.
Yes, cuddling is certainly good, but don’t underestimate the benefit of good quality sleep. Ask any married couple whether they missed sleeping by themselves, and you’ll be surprised by the number of “yes!”. Not because they don’t love sleeping with their partner, but having the whole bed by yourself is really something.
12. Single People Tend To Keep Friends and Family Close
When you are in a relationship, you might have a partner as your main support system. However, when you are single, you are more likely to receive help and support from a network of friends and family than when you are in a relationship.
13. Focus on The Ones, not only The One
On the other hand, single people tend to be more attentive to friends and families close to them than people in relationships.
When we are in a relationship, we tend to forget the bigger and broader meanings of “love”. These “ones” are just as—if not even more—important than “the one”.
14. Singles Tend To Workout More (At Least, You Have More Available Time So You Should!)
People tend to work out more when they are single. It’s probably related to the stigma that being fit equals attracting more people, but if we can be healthy and fit because of it, why not. If you are currently not in a relationship and still slacking to hit the gym, it’s time to!
15. Single= Better Sex Quality
Obviously being in a relationship will translate to more sex, and no, contrary to popular belief, studies suggested that being married equals even more sex. However, another study implied that single people tend to be more satisfied with their sex lives—quality-wise—.
What would this mean? Know that you can always have a satisfying sex life, whether you are single, in a relationship, or married.
16. You Have More Time To Pursue Your Interests and Passion
Singles have more time and freedom to pursue their passions and can focus on making an impact with their work. Singles tend to develop a better sense of independence and autonomy compared to those who are married.
Remember, that you should be happy with your own life—and what you do with it— whether you are single or in a relationship
17. Single People Are Less Likely To Have Debt
Above, we have discussed how dating—and married— life can be so expensive, and so it’s no surprise that according to Debt.com, single and unmarried people are less likely to have credit card debt. Married couples with children are the most likely to possess credit card debt at 36%.
Keep in mind, that being in a debt is a major source of stress and depression, and can also lead to various health problems (both physical and mental). Apparently, being single does have its perk in this case.
18. You Can Have an Independent Schedule
When you are married—or in a committed relationship—, we always need to consider the spouse’s schedule into account. This can be something as small as missing out on your friend’s baby shower because of their sister’s wedding, or as big as not taking a dream job abroad because of their current job. Singles, on the other hand, can have the freedom in determining their own schedules.
It’s no secret in this post-modern age that being married doesn’t always equal happiness. In fact, it can be very messy and can lead to depressing situations. Studies suggested that women are more likely to be happier when living alone, while it’s usually the opposite for men—although men are improving—.
Again, happiness is an internal state, and shouldn’t be affected by whether you are single, in a relationship, or married. A happy, single person will be a happily married person and vice versa.